Garrett had taken a chair at the table and was busying himself with the head that he had found, trying to find some way to open the perfectly sealed red plates. Artemis and Redbird stood at the monitor womb’s control panel.
The moment that alert went off, one question had been ringing in their collective heads. Who had sent it? Thanks to the work of their very very smart companion, they knew the League was gone, as was the JSA. Options were sorely limited, but between the rock and a hard place like they were, a call for help was a call for help. They had to answer it.
With the system unlocked thanks Garrett, the blonde would finally be able to. She opened the channel. “Watchtower to… anyone?” She said calmly. “We received the priority alert. Is anyone out there receiving?”
The signal was quiet. She wasn’t sure if she had been expecting an immediate response or not. After all, somebody could have fired off the alert and left to deal with whatever disaster. Perhaps they had managed to send out the alert just before they themselves succumbed to whatever it was that had taken Batman and the others. Or worse.
She pushed the thought out of her head and looked to the archer next to her. Artemis was an easy read. The same thoughts were running through the girl’s head. “Try it again.”
Just as Redbird leaned in to repeat her hail, a voice rang over the communication system. Titans Tower to Watchtower. We are receiving. Please identify.
Whomever was on the other end was at least following the standard emergency procedures that had been drilled into the young heroes even before most of them had put on a costume. The Scarlet Squire tapped a sequence into the system, sending an encrypted confirmation code, then waited.
A moment later the display flashed green and a video link was established. A blue-eyed, blonde girl’s face filled the screen. Beyond her, Redbird and Artemis could see another figure in street clothes and the darkened backdrop of the interior of Titan’s Tower. The blonde’s eyes lit and she smiled,Redbird, thank Rao. Good to know there’s at least one friendly face up there.
“Yeah well,” Redbird grumbled, “let’s not throw a party yet. Who all do you have with you?”
Casey cast a quick glance over her shoulder, Aqualad-
Whatever… He’s a friend of Aquaman’s. Listen, Red, I think we’re in it pretty deep here, and I don’t think we can count on any help.
Redbird gave a long sigh, “What about those off world, it says here,” she punched a few buttons on the computer, “that Green Lantern was off world when this went down. We could contact him.”
Casey shook her head. No can do, Red. When Scotty lost contact with his mom, his dad went all transluminal. He poofed as soon as he hit the upper atmosphere. Word is the Corps has put us under a no-fly zone.
That’s what I saw earlier. The Girl Wonder thought to herself, “Then I guess that means it’s just us against what ever this is. We need to get all of our heads together and figure out how to stop this.”
Artemis had been watching the monitors that gave the womb its name. “And all the while put out all these fires.”
We’ve been doing all we can down here, but there’s only the three of us besides pinky here-
Dude… Anyway, we’ve been able to stabilize things a bit here in New York, but I don’t think it’s going to last long. We’re looking at a Grade-A cluster-
“Crap.” All the hairs on the back of Diana’s neck were standing on end. One of the monitors showed a strange city in the lush green of a forest. Fires curled smoke up from several the buildings into the sky. The wind threatened to push the flames to the trees.
“PG?” Her white eyes locked on the massive Ape that howled, violently throwing another aside. “Get into the teletube…”
She stabbed a finger at the monitor, directing Rebird’s attention. “Get them up here and ready to go.” She turned and hooked Rett’s arm, dragging him up from the table.
“Hey, what’s doing?”
“Time to hero up, Mr. Daniels.”
By the time Artemis had Garrett moving, Casey and Ishmael had reached the entrance to the monitor womb. Casey looked from Artemis to Garrett and back, casting a silent question with nothing more than a raised brow. For his part, Ishmael’s black eyes were wide with fascination.
“I suppose some introductions are in order.” The blonde jerked a thumb over her shoulder, “This is Lagoo- er, Ishmael. He has some ties to Aquaman. Ish, I’d like you to meet Red and Arty.” She paused, looking Garrett up and down again. “And… this guy.”
Garrett grinned in that seventeen year old boy way and winked at the tall blonde. “This guy, pleased to meet you. You can call me Garrett.”
Artemis shook her head. “Back it down a few notches, prince charming.” She was already on the move, leading the group down the hall and through trophy room back to the armory. “When we got here everything was on lock down. Rett here is the reason we were able to hack into the Watchtower’s systems.” She couldn’t help the small smirk as she looked back over her shoulder a moment at the blue tipped teen. “He’s very very smart.”
The techie caught her glance and grinned. “You’re starting to believe.” He jogged a bit to catch up with her, his flipflops smacking against the ground with each step.
“You bring Reddy back, and we’ll start talking about me coming around.” Still that smirk grew a little more.
“Anything to please you lovely ladies. My clever is at your command.” He stuffed his hands in his pockets and continued to walk as if he owned the place.
“In the mean time, you need to get dressed like a big boy.” The armory door slid open before them.”We’re not taking you down to Gorilla City in your jammies.”
Beside her, Casey stopped. Her jaw opened a little. “Gorilla City?” She repeated the destination.
“Gorilla City sounds an awful lot like a jammie kind of place, perhaps cargo shorts and a Hawaiian shirt type of place.” His eyes drifted in a thoughtful daze.
He had been quiet, but Ishmael’s voice came from the back. “I’m sorry,” His glassy black eyes passed from face to face. “What is Gorilla City?”
“Right now?” Redbird started pulling a few items from the shelves. It would take more than batarangs if that was where they were headed. “Hell on earth.”
“Hell?” His brow furrowed in confusion.
“Hell is bad,” she explained “Where all the nasty people go.” She looked over at the other two girls who had busied themselves with loading up on the League’s equipment. “Don’t tell me that means what I think it means.”
Redbird confirmed her fears. “Grodd.”
The blonde bombshell palmed her face. “I said don’t tell me…”
Artemis was adjusting her replenished quiver. A grin looked on to Power Girl. “That’s why I’m glad you’re here.” She raised her fists in a defensive stance.
Garrett looked between the two girls, a touch of confusion passing through his expression. “This girl is gonna take on Grodd from Gorilla City?” His eyes flickered down her and back up. “Ohhhhhh.” His very clever mind put the clues together; blonde, big-chested, powerful. The introduction that hadn’t been made clicked for the boy. “Power or Super?”